Ford Australia’s most important new vehicle has officially started its journey Down Under.
Ford Thailand Manufacturing employees have held a send-off ceremony celebrating the production of the first shipment of the next-generation Ranger ute.
In one of the two photos shared, we can see a full yard of newly-produced, dual-cab Ranger utes, including some loaded onto a truck.
A Ford Australia spokesperson has confirmed some of these new Rangers in the photo are bound for Australia and at this stage Ford Australia is still indicating it’ll start sales of the new Ranger in June 2022.
The performance Ranger Raptor will launch in Australia in July 2022, and the next-generation Everest SUV will be in Australian customer hands from August 2022.
The Rangers in the photos are primarily XLT, Sport and Wildtrak variants, with a small amount of entry-level XL models off in the distance.
There don’t appear to be any baja-ready Ranger Raptor models in either photo.
Although Ford has commenced mass-production and shipping of the new Ranger, a leaked dealer bulletin revealed COVID-19 lockdowns in China will result in dealers having fewer examples of the new Ranger to sell than initially forecast.
“Next Gen Ranger Q2 production has been negatively impacted as a result of some major cities in China now being under COVID lockdown,” reads the confidential bulletin, dated April 27, 2022, which was shared on Facebook.
“Unfortunately, a portion of the expected Q2 production volume will need to be re-calendarised [sic], with detailed impact to production expected to available over the next fortnight.”
“The production loss from Q2 has delayed the anticipated timing of the April allocation (for July production) as we assess the latest information available and is now expected on Dealer status the morning of Thursday 28th April.”
“As a flow on effect of production loss from Q2, a portion of the April Dealer allocation (for July production) will now need to be dedicated to build existing Dealer orders from earlier allocations, decreasing the volume available to allocate to Dealers in April.”
Ford said the Chinese COVID lockdown has affected 91 suppliers and 393 unique parts used on the Ranger.
In April 2022, Ford revealed full pricing for the Ranger range. You can read our detailed price and specs article here.
The core range starts at $35,930 before on-road costs for the XL single-cab-chassis in standard high-rider body-style, and extends to $70,190 before on-road costs for the Wildtrak with the meaty V6 turbo-diesel.
The turbo-petrol V6-powered Ranger Raptor is priced from $85,490 before on-road costs.
The 2022 Ford Ranger line-up consists of the XL, XLS, XLT, Sport, Wildtrak and Raptor specification grades, and offers four engine choices all exclusively mated with automatic transmissions.
The headliner diesel is Ford’s 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 that produces 184kW of power and 600Nm of torque. A revised 2.0-litre bi-turbo diesel four-cylinder makes 154kW (down 3kW) and a familiar 500Nm, while the base 2.0-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder makes 125kW and 403Nm.
The V6 diesel costs $3000 more than the 2.0-litre bi-turbo four-cylinder alternative.
The new-gen Ranger Raptor switches the out the bi-turbo four-cylinder diesel for a 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol engine that produces 292kW and 583Nm.
Like the previous Ranger, this new-generation model was designed and engineered for the world by Ford’s Australian engineering division.
It uses an updated version of the T6 architecture but takes big strides when it comes to technology.
As we know, this new Ranger will also be the base for the next-generation Volkswagen Amarok, which is still yet to be fully revealed, and which was also heavily engineered in Australia by a team embedded locally.